When you are the owner of a small business, your most important priority will likely be keeping your expenses down so you can actually turn a profit. You may take a lot of business matters into your own hands because of this, from doing your own accounting to recording your own inventory. However, if there is one sect of your small business where you should not get stingy and try to handle things all by yourself, it is where IT issues are concerned. There are a handful of truly legitimate reasons why finding a good IT service for your small business is a good idea.
You will not face issues that can come along with network security.
Even if your business is small, somewhere stuck on a hard drive in your back office or even tucked away in your system setup is private information about your customers and employees. If a hacker manages to gain access to this information, your small business could easily be facing liability for allowing a breach to occur, and that could be enough to compromise your business’s reputation. An IT services technician will implement a strong infrastructure and security system where data is concerned so you will not have to be worried about anything private falling into the hands of someone with ill intentions.
You gain the advantage of a properly set up in-house network.
Even if your small business only has a few computer systems, a printer, and a few other network devices, keeping everything connected and running as it should will be incredibly important. System crashes, lagging connections, and faulty intranet connections can slow down your daily operations considerably. An IT services consultant will be your go-to person when things go wrong, but they can also set up a system which is less likely to see problems on a day to day basis.
You have help to find software which works ideally for your business setup.
Business software can be incredibly complex, but even more beneficial if you have the right programs in place. Business software solutions can do everything from streamlining your ordering processes to creating a staff schedule for employees. Finding a software solution for your computer network can be a daunting task because of all of the variables involved, but an IT technician with business experience is knowledgeable about what is available and what will work out best for your business needs.Learn More
Security is one of the most critical areas of a business’s operation. Are your security measures up to par? There are a number of mistakes that can occur that can actually weaken your business’s security. Make sure you know how to identify some of these common mistakes so that you can avoid them and better protect your business.
Focusing Solely On Interior Security
Make sure you aren’t focusing all your security efforts on the inside of your business. For example, for a retail store, protecting the merchandise inside the store is important. Understand that this task doesn’t just involve a security system, protective glass and other measures. Also consider the exterior areas. Is the parking lot poorly lit? Are there blind spots around the exit doors, such as shrubs? These factors decrease safety and can actually make it easier for someone to break-in.
Failing To Research Alarm Systems
Think of alarm systems in the same manner that you do equipment for your business. You wouldn’t purchase equipment without researching it; keep this in mind when purchasing an alarm system. There is no one-size-fits-all solution. For instance, the layout of your space and the type of business you operate are both determining factors. Work with a security specialist to ensure you are selecting the right commercial alarm systems for your needs.
Poor Team Member Training
Do your team members understand how to properly utilize your security systems and equipment? A system that is not being used properly is basically the same as not having any security measures in place. For example, during operating hours, it’s important to know how to activate security zones in certain areas of the building. It’s imperative that each team member who will be responsible for activating and deactivating the alarm system be properly trained.
Not Updating Locks
Good locks and a quality alarm system go hand-in-hand. If your locking mechanisms are worn or damaged, an alarm system is virtually worthless. It’s a good idea to have your locks inspected routinely by a professional to determine if they need to be updated. Some signs of a worn locking mechanism include a loose lock or one where it is difficult to insert or turn the key. If your locks are showing any of these signs, it’s time to have them replaced by a professional.
Security is a multi-dimensional process that requires a multi-dimensional approach. Make sure you and your team members are working towards the common goal of protecting your business by avoiding these and other mistakes.Learn More
If you own a business, then you know exactly how important it is to stay current. While you could certainly implement new technologies and train your staff yourself, it’s often better to hire an IT management consultant firm to do it for you.
There are several good reasons to consider hiring outside help, including these three:
1. Determining and Implementing Changes
It can be hard to determine what technologies should change in your business, especially if you are busy all the time. Hiring an outside IT management consultant firm can help, as their sole job is to focus on making your business better and more efficient. These professionals can objectively view your business, identify areas for change, and then help strategize a way to implement those changes. Whether you need to update your computers or install new software, these professionals can help you do it.
2. Employee Training
New technologies can certainly help your business run smoother, but it won’t do any good if your employees don’t know how to use them. An IT consultant firm can also help by training employees. Whether you have implemented a new technology or just want your employees to stay current, these professionals can help lessen your work load by training all current and new employees. They can also create training materials, references, and other guides that your employees can reference any time they need.
Finally, these professionals can also help with your staffing. They can help by interviewing and/or hiring employees for specific positions. Although this is something you could certainly do yourself, it’s often less stressful and time consuming to hire outside help for this. If you wish to do the interviewing and hiring, these professionals could help you choose an employee by offering unbiased advice on each candidate. In addition, you could use these professionals to help fill in for employees when they take vacation, sick leave, or quit. Since they already know the ins and outs of your business, using an IT management consultant firm to fill in makes perfect sense.
As you can see, there are many good reasons to hire an IT management consultant firm for your business. Even if you don’t work exclusively with technology, these professionals can help your business stay current in today’s quickly changing environment. If you are interested in learning more or would like to obtain a quote, contact a local management firm like Mcglaun Consulting.Learn More
When computer technology became integrated into the world of business, so did opportunities for dishonest hackers and identity thieves. While most company owners take steps to shred documents and wipe computer hard drives for protecting their company’s and their customer’s personal data, many owners are not aware of the data breach waiting to happen in their office digital copiers. See how you can protect the data that is in digital copier hard drives.
Find Out More About Your Digital Copier
Learning more about security features offered for your digital copier is smart. Some copiers have a features that ensures every document is copied over by the next one. Find out if your digital copier has encryption capabilities, and if it does not, ask the company you get your copiers from about the option of purchasing encryption features. By taking these important steps, you can do a lot to protect the sensitive data held in a digital copier hard drive.
Talk To Your Team Of IT Professionals
Ask your IT team about the steps they can take to protect copier data. Making sure your IT security people are including the protection of your company’s digital copier hard drives is essential to full data protection. Managing your company’s sensitive information is vital to you preserving your privacy and the privacy of your customers. In the event you have a breach of personal data, the outcome could land you in court, especially if any of your customers suffer identity theft because of the breach in your company. You can hire outside security professionals that specialize in cleaning and erasing digital copier hard drives as well. Setting a schedule for security maintenance on all of your digital copiers can help reduce the risk of breaches.
Set Rules About Copier Data Storage
Plan a meeting with your employees for discussing digital copier features and the amount of data you want on one. By setting rules about your copiers, you can greatly lower the risk of data breaches. For example, limiting the kind of company data that is stored on a copier is important. Making sure everyone in your office is aware of the risks associated with digital copier data storage is important.
One of the greatest responsibilities you have as a business owner is protecting the personal of information of your customers and of your company. By learning more about the digital age and the many ways data can be stored and found by untrustworthy people, you can do to protect yourself, your employees and your customers.
For more information about copiers, contact Royal Business Systems, Inc. or a similar company.Learn More
When it comes to choosing an IT consulting expert, businesses generally have two options at their disposal: hire a permanent position in which an IT consulting expert becomes an in-house member of your team, or outsource to an independent entity to provide you with your IT consulting needs. Both can be a rewarding experience that can potentially be good for your business. Throughout the course of this brief article, you’ll learn a bit about some of the reasons you would choose an out-of-house IT consulting expert.
When you hire out-of-house talent, take into consideration that these firms and individuals have built their reputation on solid, quick work that has become the talk of the industry. Although out-of-house IT consulting experts only work on a case by case basis, most firms can offer you an individual that specifically fits the demand of the project that you’re working on. Likewise, independent individuals also get work by playing up their specific skills which can meet your IT consulting needs; some individuals, for example, are experts at large systems consulting, while others work on honing their skills in project organization.
Focused and Specialized
It is sometimes best to have a fresh set of eyes to consult on a given project. If you hire an in-house consultant, you’ll have to take into consideration that you’re working with one individual’s perspective for the rest of your long term IT projects. An out-of-house consultant can be brought in for a solitary project, and will not also have to worry about juggling multiple projects for your company, thus spreading him- or herself too thin.
Model of Delivery and Staff Density
When you hire an out-of-house IT consultant, you get to choose the intensity of their workload. If you desire to place them on several projects at a time or to focus merely on one solitary project, that is your prerogative. If you work with a consultation firm, take into consideration of the fact that you can also hire multiple independent consultants, if you wish. The density of your out-of-house staff is entirely at your discretion and budget.
An out-of-house IT consultant can bring a fresh perspective to the projects of which you’re currently at the helm. An independent IT consultant can also help to reinvigorate the scope and direction of your how you company handles information. Hopefully, this brief guide has given you some insight into the advantages of hiring an independent contractor, or working with a firm.Learn More
Cell phones are out of range of an operating signal tower for more than seventy percent of the total surface of the earth. This is because the earth is more than seventy percent water, and your cell phones will not work at sea unless you are on a commercial liner that has its own cell tower or a naval submarine. When you also account for an additional twenty percent or so of the earth where you are on land and out of range of a cell tower, that is almost ninety percent of the globe where your phone will not work. Here are some alternative communication devices that can help you cover the gaps and open/ out-of-range areas where your cell phone will have zero bars.
Long Range Walkie-Talkies/ Push-to-Talk Devices
Long range walkie-talkies and push-to-talk communication devices have a greater range and can pick up on other channels when you are trying to find a signal. When you are lost in the middle of nowhere, a long range walkie-talkie or push-to-talk device can be picked up by ranger stations if you are within a certain number of miles. Since you will undoubtedly need the rangers’ help to find your way out of the wilderness or out of a blizzard, these devices become more invaluable when you plan to drive through a no-cellular zone.
CB radios that you install in your vehicle may help save your life too. The long range antennas on these devices can help you communicate with police cars, emergency vehicles and truckers on the road. Many people who drive very large pickup trucks often install CB radios in their vehicles too, as do tow truck companies and their drivers. If you cannot afford satellite radio, CB radio is the next best thing when your cell phone is dead and/or out of range.
Satellite Two-Way Radios
Similar to walkie-talkies, these radios rely on a system relay of signals. The difference here, however, is that satellite two-way radios use satellite transmissions to send and receive messages. If you have a fully charged, waterproof satellite two-way, you could be lost on a deserted island and still make contact with someone within a twenty-four hour period when the satellites in orbit move overhead and a ship gets within range. The satellite radio in some vehicles works this way, which is why it might be a good idea if you are traveling great distances on land through phone dead zones.Learn More
You may notice that your Internet slows down to a crawl whenever your next door neighbor comes home from work. It could be a coincidence and simply the result of a greater demand being placed on the network, but it could also be the result of your neighbor gaining access to your Internet connection and using up your bandwidth. Fortunately, there are ways to identify if this is the case.
Check Your Modem Lights
Turn all of the computers in your home off and to look at the lights on your modem. If the lights are solid, this would indicate that no one is currently accessing your router. However, if one of the lights is blinking, someone may still be accessing your modem, indicating that someone is stealing your Internet.
Find Out Your IP Address
The first step is to know what your IP address is so that you can differentiate it from any other IP addresses trying to access your network. Simply run the “Run” program and type “ipconfig.” Your IP will start with IPv4 and will be followed with a string of numbers.
Access Your Router
Sometimes, you can check your router’s log depending on the type of router you own. Some routers also come with software that makes it easier for you to check your log. You can then see who is logging onto your computer. You can access the router by typing in the IP address of your router. If you aren’t sure what this is, this information may have been provided with your modem. Also, when you typed in “ipconfig”, the IP will be listed under “Default Gateway.” Your router will come with a default username and password you must enter.
There is usually a tab that reads “attached devices.” Look through the list of IP addresses to determine if any do not match your IP address. If so, there is someone else using your Wi-Fi. Then, you can setup a new WEP key so the user will no longer have the password to login to your computer. Your router will reboot and the other user will then be kicked off of your router.
Turn Off Broadcasting
To make it even harder for other users to access your modem, turn off broadcasting. This is a setting that is found on the router setting’s page. Make sure that the checkbox “Enable SSID Broadcast” is not checked. Then, you’ll have faster Internet speed because no one will be stealing your Internet.
For further assistance, contact a local internet service provider, such as Solarus.Learn More